Years ago, Aaron recognized that many churches and Christian organizations needed diversity education and training. After working for several years as a Director of Diversity at Westminster Christian Academy (Saint Louis, Missouri), Aaron founded Relate2Color. Aaron holds a B.A. in Psychology, an M.A. in Education, and an M. Div. from Covenant Theological Seminary (Saint Louis, Missouri).
For the past 25 years, Aaron has responded to God's calling to bridge communities of various racial and cultural backgrounds. He has taught at the high school level in both public and private schools, facilitated seminary and church forums, and has presented at various national conferences including the Presbyterian Church in America and People of Color, Additionally, Aaron is the founder and
Aaron J. Layton, Founder and CEO
director of an annual Christian diversity conference for middle school students in the Saint Louis area. Aaron's passion for racial reconciliation extends to all age groups, and the Lord has gifted him to relate to a various populations.
Aaron has been happily married to his wife, Gretchen, for over 25 years, and they have two college-aged children. Along with his love for college football, Aaron loves coffee, a good book, and great conversation.
Greginald Summers has a heart and passion for diversity and comes to Relate2Color with years of corporate diversity experience. He recently retired from Ameren Missouri, which provides gas and electric service to more than 500 communities in the greater St. Louis area, after working there for 40 years. Greginald was selected by Ameren, along with a team of company employees, to serve as a Diversity Facilitator. He was later appointed to the Sioux Plant Diversity Steering Committee, where he served as the team captain. In 2010, he joined Ameren’s Diversity Newsletter Committee and eventually became a Diversity Ambassador for Ameren. To no one's surprise, Greginald received the 2010 Thomas R. Voss Diversity Excellence Award. He brings numerous years of corporate diversity experience and wisdom to Relate2Color. Greginald and his wife, Wanda, have been married for 26 years, and they have an adult son.
Since 2007, Lauren SImpson has been teaching English and endeavoring to educate herself, her students, and her community about issues of race and culture in America. She began her teaching career in the Clayton School District (Clayton, Missouri) and then joined the Westminster Christian Academy faculty in 2014. At Westminster, she worked with students to start United Neighbors in Today's Youth (U.N.I.T.Y. Club), the first-ever club focused on issues of diversity at the school. Then, alongside Aaron Layton, Lauren wrote the curriculum for a new history course called Race and Culture, which they teach together each year. In addition to teaching, Lauren has served on the Westminster Minority Outreach Council since 2014. She is also actively involved each year in the CSASL Imago Dei Leadership Conference, WCA Black History Month celebrations, and student trips to Memphis to explore America's racial history and culture. For many years, Lauren and her husband have also felt called to transracial adoption. In December 2017, the Lord confirmed this calling through the miraculous, whirlwind adoption of their son, who is African American. The call to racial reconciliation has deepened now in an incredibly personal way as she and her husband raise their son and endeavor to teach him how the Lord created him -- and all people of the earth -- beautifully and intentionally in the skin they're in.
Dave Schall brings over twenty years' educational experience to Relate2Color, having served as a teacher, coach, and school administrator. While most of his career in education was spent at Westminster Christian Academy, he began teaching and coaching at McCluer North High School in 1997 where he first met Relate 2 Color founder, Aaron Layton. Being a white male in a school comprised of mostly African-American students, Dave became interested in diversity awareness and racial reconciliation. In 2008, Dave and Aaron were reunited as colleagues again, this time at Westminster, and worked together to educate faculty, staff, students, and families on how to have a safe conversations regarding issues of race, color, religion, and politics -- all from a Biblical perspective. Dave now serves as the St. Charles Area Director for the Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA). He is married to Stephanie, his wife of over 15 years, and they have a 12-year old daughter and a 10-year old son.
Damion Jones is the Global Director of Inclusion & Diversity for Monsanto Company within their Talent Acquisition / Diversity and Inclusion / Compliance / Contingent Workforce Department. He is responsible for outlining the company's inclusion strategy and recommending actions regarding company culture and operations. He consults with various functions and regions regarding the acquisition, development and retention of diverse talent globally, as well as supplier diversity. In recent years, he has led strategic initiatives regarding the diversity dashboard design, mentoring and unconscious bias training for Monsanto leaders world-wide. Currently, Damion leads the company's global ERG strategy which includes oversight for 29 Business Resource Networks across 6 geographies. Outside of Monsanto, Damion also provides guest lectures and webinars on topics of inclusion, psychology and leadership within corporate, educational and civic institutions. In response to the Ferguson Commission's recommendations to aid the socioeconomic stability for Black businesses within the St. Louis metropolitan area, the Heartland St. Louis Black Chamber of Commerce was established, and Damion was asked to sit as a founding board member. He also serves on the board of the Biome, a Youth Learning Center STEAM charter school that utilizes Carol Dweck’s work on “growth mindset” to instruct students in underserved communities. Please click here and complete a brief survey to hear Damion's career advice on how to respond to "I don't see color in the workplace." Damion and his wife, Marvis, have three children.